If you need some time away from the books, but your budget isn’t stretching far, here are five holiday destinations that won’t break the bank.

Budapest, Hungary

Budapest is emerging as a fabulous choice for student travellers who can slurp down a bowl of goulash for lunch, and spend the afternoon turning into a prune in one of the bathhouses - for less than it costs to get a curry takeout. Tourism is increasing in this Eastern-European city and the time is ripe to see the glistening green Danube and the Art Nouveau architecture that inspired Wes Anderson’s film ‘The Grand Budapest Hotel’. Do it before flocks of tourists descend on the city like Prague or Paris. Wherever you go in Buda or Pest, from the winding streets of the Jewish Quarter, or the shopping streets off Kelvin Ter, you'll find something that will surprise you. Whatever you do, don't leave before spending a wild night in a ruin bar (where drinks will cost you pocket change), and a jaunt on the Number two tram. The tram will take you past all of the city's most impressive tourist attractions for a couple of quid.


Marrakesh, Morocco

A night in a gorgeous riad in Marrakech's medina will set you back 30 pounds and will come with a free breakfast of homemade bread and orange juice. Cut the luxuries of your own room and you can make that 30 pounds last for a whole week! (breakfast still included). While the excellent shopping on offer in the winding maze of markets might make you feel a bit cash-strapped, there are lots of experiences that won't empty your wallet. Watch the sunset over Jemma El-fnaa square with a cup of steaming mint tea, see how lost you can get in the streets, and have a scrub down at the hammam. While Morocco is a dry country, at least you won't be forking out for overpriced drinks - it may be the detox your student liver might need.



Sun-blistered, lively and full of feeling, Portugal is often overshadowed by its popular neighbour Spain, but it shouldn't be compared. The budget-strapped should head to Porto where you can't go wrong following the locals into tiny tapas joints. Wash fresh, affordable seafood down with port wine and don't feel guilty for opting for a second (or third) glass because cheap wine is plentiful. Lisbon is also worth visiting even if your budget only limits you to a tram trip or two. If you're after some time at the beach and to shake off some of the UK winter blues, consider tripping between the two towns - beautiful beaches are plentiful on this strip of coast.


Amsterdam, The Netherlands

Amsterdam has been the destination of choice for hedonists and party-seekers for generations. But now, Amsterdam is moving away from its seedy image and emerging as the new, cooler Berlin. It’s full of young creatives, trendy vintage stores, and beautiful people riding (very fast) on bikes. Spend at least a day exploring the De Pijp area with its coffee shops (serving actual coffee) and markets selling everything from clothing to produce. When your feet are hurting, plop down on the grass in the beautiful Vondelpark or take a cheap canal cruise to see more of the tree-lined canals. If you're worried about spending too much money on food, no one will judge you if you live off chewy stroopwafels. Only an hour-long flight from London, it might be time to pop over for the weekend.


Edinburgh, Scotland

If you’re feeling really strapped for cash but aching for a weekend away, Edinburgh has everything you need for a good time. Just don’t blame us for the hangover - Scots can drink. While Edinburgh is famous for its yearly tattoo (read: big party), the city and its bars are pumping with life all year round. Spend the day walking the city and taking in the sites such as the impressive Edinburgh Castle, and the night holed up in a pub or bar with some live music. If you’ve ever wanted to be the whisky drinking type, now is your time to knock back some of the stiff stuff.

Whether you choose the sunny beaches of Portugal, or a bar stool in a moody Scottish pub, having a holiday can breathe some life back into your school year. You’ll return with a great new experience, perhaps a nice tan, and hopefully enough money left over for a few packets of instant noodles.